Starting a small business can be a class now. My name is Nick Hale, and I am a senior here at De Smet Jesuit. This semester I am participating in the Magis Institute Independent Study program. This program is a class that you can sign up for like any other, but the fun thing about it is that the student gets to design the class. The self-designed classes can entail anything from picking a research topic to taking an online course. This year, with the help of my mentor Mr. Lange, I am designing my class to revolve around starting my own small business selling stickers.
I got much of the inspiration for this idea during my Business 1 class, which I took a year ago. In that class one of my group projects was to produce a working prototype of a product we designed. My group went beyond the prototype phase and even made several actual items and listed them on Etsy for a while. Even though the product never went anywhere, I thought that it was a cool project, and I had a lot of fun working on my product designs. When it was time to choose classes last spring, I saw in the course catalog that I could work on a business idea for an independent study project. I knew I had to it. I could not pass up such a unique class opportunity.
I also saw this project as a huge opportunity to further my college search. I have been considering going for some kind of business degree for a few years now, but this experience has really helped me decide. Now as I am filling out applications, I am feeling fairly certain that I want to go to school for business. Although I wasn’t completely sure what I was getting myself into when I signed up for this, this project is definitely something that I am passionate about.
This whole process has been a lot harder than I had expected, and it has taken me a lot more work than expected to get it going. I hadn’t realized at all just how many small details I would have to work out setting up my business. I have been lucky to have Mr. Lange helping me. If it weren’t for his direction, I don’t think that I would have been able to stay on track. However, now it is finally coming together. I have gone around De Smet and received the approvals I need. I created a fairly large collection of designs, I have set up an online store to sell my stickers in, I have successfully tested the ordering process, and I have even set up a Facebook page for my store. Now that I am finally going live, I just can’t wait to see how my business does.